It finally happened. I found certifiable Momzillas at lacrosse practice. As it turns out, these were actually the common Dadzilla variant. They appear to turn up more frequently at sporting events involving balls or other projectile objects.
Is is two-thirds of the way through the current season of our local girls’ lacrosse league. My first and third graders participate in this weekly 90-minute outing where the girls generally chase the ball in clumps, scooping it up off the ground after they miss a pass more-or-less directed at them. For the little kiddos, lacrosse seems to mostly be an exercise in running after a ground ball in an attempt to scoop it up and outrun all defenders, without any pretense of teamwork, en route to the miniature goal.
So this week during practice, I sat in my lawnchair drinking Enviga and catching up on some work. In order to sit in the shade, I was positioned behind two other groups of lawnchairs, all facing the 6-9 year olds on the field. As I typically do, I started to bemoan the abundance of crazy in skating, as opposed to more normal, grounded sports like lacrosse.
In the one of the greatest Mother’s Day realizations ever, I noted that the father sitting closest to me, cleverly disguised as a relaxed Jimmy Buffet-listening, Blackberry Solitaire-playing father of two, encouraged his athlete to rejoin her team after coming over for a water break. Actually, he didn’t so much encourage her, as time her water break (one-one thousand, two-one thousand, three-one thousand) and take the water bottle away, telling her to rejoin her team.
I’ll admit, my interest was piqued, but my 'Zilla-dar wasn’t fully pinging, until…
A few moments later, the older-looking gentleman sitting in front of me in one of two matching pristine lawnchairs with the covers neatly hung over the backs, allowed his Dadzilla out for a walk. Apparently, he also has two daughters playing in the 1st-3rd grade league. His kids had the dubious fortune to be stationed directly in front of him while they did passing drills with their team. These girls could actually catch the ball some of the time (which, I can attest, is no small feat). It was apparent that they have either (a) been doing this for a while, (b) practice regularly, or (c) both. My vote was quickly swayed to (b) when Dad started barking orders at them, “Catch on the side! Back up! Move in! Choke up!” It was almost as bad as when I watched a major skating Momzilla call her child over to the glass to tell her to whip harder from her camel spin to the sit spin because the judges would downgrade the combination with too few rotations. Oy!
Luckily for the girls, they stopped drills and started a game, and that particular Dadzilla managed to keep his coaching in check for the rest of the session.
Not so lucky, however, for Jimmy Buffet-zilla’s kid, who had the nerve to sit down on the sideline when she was rotated out of the game. Her father actually dragged the younger daughter across the field to tell this poor kid to stand up on the sideline, even if she isn’t playing.
As I watched this unfold, I was struck by two things. First, this child was no older than third grade. Second, this is not the Naval Academy. Standing at attention for the duration of the contest is not required. Even my beloved Phoenix Suns are allowed to sit in their purple chairs when they’re not in the game.
So I left the practice feeling more than a little bit better about my situation as a skating Momzilla. The insanity is everywhere. And on that day, it was not mine. Unless you consider that I gleefully took out pen and paper to take notes on the other crazy people, and laughed out loud at their antics while I scribbled away. Fine. I still suffer from a touch of the crazies. But at least I know...